Medical professionals are bound by law to do no harm to the patients that they treat. But this is not always the case. Medical errors are the third-leading cause of death in the country; only heart disease and cancer kill more people than errors made by trained and supposedly dedicated people in the medical community. You have a reasonable right to believe that you will not be harmed by the actions of the doctors, nurses, and other staff that attend to your medical care when you go to your regular provider or seek out the services of a specialist. However, millions of people are injured by medical errors each year, some significantly so. If you are among them, then you owe it to yourself and the patients who will come after you to speak up and hold the medical professional in question accountable for his or her actions. Russell and Hill has a history of helping medical malpractice claimants settle their cases with the accountable party and their insurers. Reach out to our medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible following your injury.

Statistics on Medical Malpractice

Misdiagnosis, or diagnostic errors, is the most common type of medical negligence that results in medical malpractice claims. They also happen to be the most costly, representing the highest percentage of total malpractice claim payments at 35.2 percent as of 2017. If you adjust the numbers for inflation, the payouts for diagnosis-related malpractice claims were approximately $38.8 billion over the course of a 25-year period.

Surgery errors are the most common inpatient causes of medical malpractice, making up 34 percent of claims; diagnostic errors are the most common cause of outpatient medical malpractice claims, making up 46 percent of claims.

Medical Malpractice Causes

There are a number of causes behind medical malpractice claims. Regarding inpatient cases, these include:

  • Surgical errors: Ranging from leaving surgical instruments inside the body to the amputation of the wrong limb. The most common types of surgical errors include:
    • Surgery performed on the wrong site
    • Surgery performed on the wrong patient
    • Organ damage
    • Use of unsanitary surgical tools
    • Nerve damage
  • Problems with anesthesia: Including damage to the patient’s trachea by a breathing tube being improperly inserted, or brain damage or even death due to the patient’s inability to breathe easily during surgery.

Common causes of outpatient medical malpractice cases include:

  • Misdiagnosis or failure to diagnose: In adults, this commonly regards the failure to diagnose cancer or heart attacks; in children, the most common errors occur in the diagnosis of meningitis.
  • Childbirth: Approximately 20 percent of medical malpractice suits are filed against OBGYNs, more so than any other type of doctor. There are three types of childbirth related medical malpractice claims:
    • Injuries to the child or mother
    • Wrongful birth (i.e. parents were not made aware of birth defects that would have changed their decision about carrying the fetus to term)
    • Wrongful pregnancy (where an attempted pregnancy termination fails)
  • Medication errors: More than 1.5 million injuries are caused by medication errors in the U.S. each year. These include:
    • Prescription errors, such as prescribing the wrong medication or dose
    • Administering the wrong medication or wrong dose
    • Failure to warn the patient of potentially dangerous side effects
    • Prescribing the right medication for the wrong diagnosis

Filing a Claim

You don’t have to suffer in silence. You have a legal right to collect compensation for any injuries that you sustain due to the incompetence and negligence of a medical provider. Our Kirkland medical malpractice attorney is standing ready to help you go to bat against the big insurers representing your doctor, dentist, or other medical practitioner. Contact Russell and Hill to schedule your no-cost case evaluation now.

Click To Call